Doctors Say ‘Avocado Hand’ is On the Rise: What is it and How to Protect Yourself

posted: 05/15/17
by: Amanda Mushro
preparing avocado for guacamole recipe on wooden cutting board

If you are a fan of avocados and love them on your salad, toast, and of course in guacamole, then you know that cutting an avocado can be a little tricky. If you've ever struggled to break open this delicious fruit, you aren't alone. In fact, the number of injuries caused by improper cutting of avocados is on the rise so much so that doctors are even calling for warning labels to printed avocados. Doctors have dubbed injuries resulting from the knife you are slicing an avocado with slipping into your hand "avocado hand."

So why are we seeing this uptick in injury when cutting into an avocado? It all has to do with ripeness. According to Simon Eccles, former president of the plastic surgery section of the Royal Society of Medicine, who told The Times of London "This 'global phenomenon' can happen if a person doesn't realize how ripe their avocado is when cutting through it."

Brunchers beware: Eccles said he treats about four patients a week for avocado hand and his hospital even experiences a "post-brunch surge" on Saturdays. Who can blame these poor avocado hand sufferers, have you put avocado on your eggs? It's amazing.

Even celebrities like Meryl Streep has been a victim of avocado hand. Back in 2012 she was seen wearing a bandage after reportedly getting stitches before having to undergoing surgery as a result of her avocado hand injury.

How can we enjoy our favorite food without a trip to the ER? You just need the right tools. Start by wrapping the avocado with a damp cloth--this will help keep the avocado in place so it won't slip. Also be sure to use a small knife you will be able to easily manipulate rather than a large bulky knife. When removing the pit, lodge the knife into the pit and wiggle the knife to pull the pit out safely and in one piece. Now enjoy your avocado without injury